Managing employee turnover is essential to the success of an organization, regardless of the economy’s health. As reported by the Society for Human Resource Management, the cost to replace a valuable employee can soar as high as 60-90% of an employee’s annual salary. The substantial cost is often attributed to hiring costs, onboarding, training, productivity loss, and of course, errors.


To a certain extent, turnover is inevitable since people exit companies for countless reasons. Still, it’s possible to recognize telltale signs that a high performing employee is preparing to leave. Every human resource professional, manager, and business owner should learn to perceive these sometimes-subtle warnings and intercede appropriately to retain top talent within their business.


  1. Online Profiles


Over the last decade, LinkedIn has become a prominent force in online recruitment, as well as ZipRecruiter, Indeed, and Monster. Consequently, it’s now possible for an individual in an office setting to easily evaluate other options from their work desk.


An early and easy to spot indicator that an employee is polishing his or her resume and gearing up for a career change is increased activity on the aforementioned professional platforms and job search boards. On LinkedIn, users can even highlight their profile to recruiters that they’re currently looking for new opportunities.


  1. Personal Calls


Though we all value privacy, especially in the digital age, frequent personal phone calls taken away from work areas during regular business hours, could be a red flag. Before jumping to any conclusions, keep in mind that the calls may pertain to an emergency or necessity. If the behavior persists and negatively affects the employee’s work, discuss it with them in private, but avoid assumptions.


  1. Personal Appearance


As corporate culture has evolved with the hiring of Gen Z and Millennials, so has office fashion. If you’re not in law or finance, odds are your work attire is lax and comfortable. As a result, employees suddenly sporting a new suit or stylish outfit will stand out, suggesting a desire to impress. 


  1. Tardiness and Attendance


Employees who pride themselves on punctuality and attendance that start arriving late, leaving work early, or calling in sick unexpectedly is a strong sign that something’s wrong. They could be adjusting their schedule to meet with new employers or experiencing a general decrease in their happiness and satisfaction. Either way, it’s best to check-in with them.


  1. Major Life Changes


Life is full of the unexpected. Get to know your employees on a personal level and keep up with any significant life events. Marriage, divorce, pregnancy, or a death in the family can all affect an employee’s tenure with the company.


  1. Track Record


Job hopping is much more common nowadays, especially among younger generations. Employees with resumes that showcase a track record of switching companies every few years are more likely to continue the trend.


  1. Complaints


Constructive criticism has a time and place in the workplace, but employees previously perceived as content and productive who now actively voice their complaints are worth a closer look. If an underlying problem exists that requires HR’s attention, it’s best to proactively address it to reduce the spread of negativism throughout the company.


  1. Engagement & Output


Is an all-star employee suddenly phoning it in? Do they lack enthusiasm and attentiveness in meetings? Is the quality of their work diminishing at a meteoric rate? Do they recoil at additional projects and responsibilities? Any of the above may be an indication that an employee is getting ready to jump ship.


  1. Intrapersonal Conflict


Healthy working relationships help keep an organization running smoothly. If one of your best employees is struggling with a toxic co-worker, he or she may transfer to another company to reduce stress in their lives. It’s critical to intervene and resolve conflict within the workplace early on to maintain a safe work environment.


  1. Lack of Opportunity


Exceptional employees who are consistently overlooked for promotions and forward advancement are likely to feel undervalued. While upward mobility is not always an option given the scope of the team and company, there are other methods to demonstrate employee appreciation. Work with your HR team to develop a program that cultivates employee growth.


Are you still struggling to reduce employee turnover and retain your most valued employees? StaffScapes, a leader in HR outsourcing in Denver, can help! Call StaffScapes today, and let us assist you in setting up your organization for ultimate success.